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Tech jolts Pioneers, slips into tourney

They’re in.

Franklin County Technical School pulled off a minor upset to qualify for Western Massachusetts Division III Girls’ Basketball Tournament as it knocked off Pathfinder Vocational High School, 37-31, Monday night in a Tri-County League in Turners Falls.

“What a game,” said a relieved Eagles head coach Ed Marvell afterward. “The girls are ecstatic. There wasn’t a dry eye in the house, parents too.

“There’s no ‘I’ in team and these girls knew it,” he added “They played excellent defense.”

Jasmine Farr-Marcum, who committed three first-half fouls and a fourth early in the third quarter, came through in the final period with 9 of the Eagles’ 13 points to help them hang to the crucial victory.

Farr-Marcum finished with a game-high 12 points, while Brittany Andrews netted 8 points, Brooke Meuse added 7 points and Megan Aldrich pulled down a team-high 10 rebounds.

Donna Becker led the Pioneers with 11 points, but no one else managed more than 7 against the Eagles’ tough defense.

“We played a 3-2 zone and got out on their shooters, and it held down their outside shooting for the most part,” said Marvell.

Franklin Tech (10-10, 10-6) led 15-12 at halftime.

Mahar 48, Easthampton 35 — Mahar Regional School held Easthampton High School scoring leader Elizabeth Whitney without a field goal in the entire second half en route to a 48-35 victory in Franklin County League girls’ basketball action Monday night at the Grzesik-Bizby Complex in Orange.

Jill Valley led the Senators with 17 points while registering seven steals. Ally Parker and Natashia Patria both had 8 points, while Cassie Verheyen (eight rebounds) and Jenelle Juskiewicz both finished with 6 points as Mahar (16-3, 15-3 North) led 19-15 at halftime.

Kristen Windoloski led the Eagles (15-4, 14-4 South) with 12 points (all on 3-pointers), while Whitney finished with 11.

Mahar visits Belchertown High School on Wednesday night at 7 in a battle of Division II Tourney qualifiers.

Hopkins 50, Athol 45 — Hopkins Academy ripped off 11 straight points to overcome a 37-34 deficit in the fourth quarter and upset Athol High School, 50-45, in a FCL girls’ basketball contest Monday night before a packed house at Reed Gymnasium in Hadley.

McKenzie Sullivan drained four 3-pointers and finished with a game-high 16 points for the Golden Hawks (12-8, 12-6 South), who led 15-4 after the first quarter and 23-12 at the half. Olivia Mathieu added 15 points and Kate Sullivan chipped in 13 points for the winners.

Caitlin Muzzy led the Red Raiders (19-1, 17-1 North) with 11 points. Alexa Whitney dropped in 10.

“We got over the hump and couldn’t stay there,” said Athol head coach Dan Bevis of the his squad’s fourth-quarter drought. “Plus, 12-for-28 from the free-throw line isn’t gong to win you many games. ... They made the plays and we didn’t, especially early. We have to put this behind us and move on.”

Pioneer 47, Turners 43 — Pioneer Valley Regional School wrapped up its season with a 47-43 FCL win over Turners Falls High School in girls’ basketball play Monday night at Messer Gymnasium in Northfield.

Natalie Hale finished a stellar season for the Panthers (9-11, 7-11) with 13 points, five rebounds and five steals. Katlyn Grover drained a dozen points, while Gabby Carpenter collected 8 points, eight rebounds and three blocked shots. Six of her points came in the final quarter, including two key free throws in the final minute.

Hailey Raymond turned in a strong effort on defense, while totaling five assists and four steals.

Jenna Putala and Tanisha Sanders each scored 13 points for the Indians (8-12, 6-12), who led 31-30 entering the final period.

Frontier 39, Smith Academy 15 — Frontier Regional School closed out its regular season slate with a 39-15 FCL girls’ basketball victory over Smith Academy in girls’ basketball play on Monday night at Goodnow Gymnasium in South Deerfield.

Amanda Calvo led a balanced effort for the Red Hawks (11-9, 11-7) with 8 points, while

Jordan Rowe, Mindy Esposito and Olivia Riordan all netted 7 points. Sydney Judge contributed four rebounds and 10 steals for Frontier, which led 12-5 at halftime and held a 31-22 rebounding edge for the game.

Ashley Higgins led the Falcons with a game-high 14 points.

Boys’ game

Mahar 48, Easthampton 45 — Mahar continued to improve its position for a higher seed in the upcoming Division II Tournament as it downed Easthampton, 48-45, in Hampshire League boys’ basketball action Monday night in Easthampton.

Brendin Woodard again came through for the Senators (14-5, 13-4 HL East), as he drained a long 3-pointer from the top of the key with 16 seconds left in regulation to break a 45-45 stalemate.

Mahar actually trailed 45-39 with 2 minutes left but rallied to tie it before Woodard’s NBA-range trey hit nothing but twine.

Nick Slattery led the Senator offense with 13 points. Woodard finished with 11 points, five assists and four rebounds, Rafael Silva threw in 9 points and Jake Paul pulled down nine boards.

Dakota Wheeler bucketed a game-high 15 points for the Eagles, and Tom Palaschak added 9.

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